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Gastric Emptying (Solid or Liquid)

A gastric emptying study measures the speed with which food leaves the stomach and enters the small intestine. Gastric emptying studies are done to diagnose symptoms that may be related to slow or rapid emptying of the stomach.

What to Bring

  • Your medical provider order (Your medical provider may have already sent this to us.)
  • Personal ID
  • Insurance card
  • Medication list

How to Prepare

  • Narcotic pain relievers, Reglan (metoclopramide), Nexium® and erythromycin (along with any other stomach medications) should not be taken 48 hours before your study. The list is quite extensive. Do not stop any medication unless you have spoken with your medical provider. If you have questions regarding medications, you can call us at (985) 230-1140 or (985) 230-7245.
  • Please do not eat or drink for 12 hours before your study.
  • For people with diabetes, monitor your blood glucose. This should be maintained near normal levels below 200.
  • The exam could last up to 4 hours with images taken at specific intervals during the exam. Each image only takes 60 seconds with an hour of waiting in between each image. We want your waiting time in between the images to be as pleasant as possible. Consider bringing a magazine, book or music player (with earbuds) to help you pass the time.
  • If you are pregnant or think you might be, please inform the imaging technologist.
  • If you wear an on-body device (insulin pump, insulin regulators, Neulasta, other chemo/insulin devices, etc.), you must inform your technologist.

What to Expect

  • Upon arrival, the imaging technologist will explain the procedure and answer any questions you may have.
  • For a “solid” study, you will be given a scrambled egg with toast, jelly and butter with a tiny amount of radioactive substance to allow the imaging to occur. For patients who are allergic to eggs, we will provide oatmeal.
  • For a “liquid” study, you will be asked to drink a glass of water with a tiny amount of radioactive material to allow the imaging to occur.

After the Exam

  • There are no post-exam instructions. You may resume your medications as directed by your medical provider.
  • Your study will be reviewed by a radiologist, and the results will be sent to your medical provider. Your medical provider will discuss the results with you.

Schedule an Appointment

Call North Oaks Scheduling at (985) 230-7777 between 7 am and 5 pm.

If you are a provider and need to send an order, please fax it to (985) 230-6781.